Concept learning effectiveness using prototype and skill development presentation forms

Robert D Tennyson, Johnny N. Chao, Judith Youngers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Investigated whether concept learning is a 2-fold process: acquisition of a prototype and development of generalization and discrimination skills. Data analyses showed that learning was facilitated for 120 4th-grade students by a presentation form that combined expository statements of best examples (prototype acquisition) with interrogatives (skill development) over presentations that were expository or interrogatory only. At the concrete and identity levels of concept attainment, a prototype was learned with all 3 presentation forms, but only with the expository-interrogatory form was the acquired prototype maintained on the retention test. At the classificatory and formal levels, skills were developed and maintained with the expository-interrogatory presentation form only. A 2nd independent variable contrasted instructional materials designed with and without formative evaluations. Results show no difference in posttest performance. (21 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)326-334
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Educational Psychology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 1 1981


  • prototype & skill development presentation forms & formative evaluation, concept learning, 4th graders

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